I’ve been thinking a lot about confidence lately. How it affects our behavior and how we react to those who project it. The entire confidence spectrum can be found in the metal world, but you just can’t dismiss how much confidence there is in hardcore. It’s something that has always baffled me because, for a sub-genre as musically poor as hardcore, they seem to have unhealthy amounts of confidence overall. Hardcore is all about chest-thumping attitude, but talking the talk is much different from actually walking the walk. And of course, the more you talk without actually being capable of walking, the more of a pretentious douchebag you are. This air of false confidence prevades all too many hardcore bands, especially those only capable of coming up with a couple of washed up riffs, uninventive drumming and overbearing vocals. Like me, you’ll reflect on all of this while listening to Dsycarnate’s And So It Came to Pass.
Dsycarnate is a band from southern England which plays death metal with a lot of hardcore influences. I wouldn’t call it deathcore though, because it doesn’t succeed in mixing death metal and hardcore properly like All Shall Perish or the late great Despised Icon [so, you’re saying it’s failed deathcore! – AMG]. It’s like they’ve found two things that could mix well together, but exerted no effort to actually mix them. Instead, its death metal riffs with lots of vocal lines, and I really mean LOTS of vocal lines. You’ll find a lot of online hype singing the praises of And So It Came to Pass, with various superlatives to describe their skills and chops. However, as the score above obviously declares, I found this repetitive, shallow and uninspired.
The introductory track “The Weight of All Things” fulfills the requirements of being an anthemic opener meant for huge stadium concerts. The chugging is confident and the beats are plodding enough to get the crowd jumping, though they sound a bit too metalcore-ish. After this two-minute opener, the formula becomes more and more obvious with each song. The vocals are a bit more on the hardcore side and have way too many lyrics. The tracks don’t let the instruments breath because they’re too short and crammed to overflowing with vocals. The guitar tone never varies or changes, the vocals take up too much space and fail to provide anything engaging. The bass is almost completely inaudible, while the drums are stuck in closed loops of blasting, 4-strokes-per-drum breaks and hardcore-friendly double bass patterns.
I hope the future brings some much-needed musical maturity to Dsycarnate. Given their young age and individual technical abilities, they can be much better with time, but a lot of work is needed at this point. While I can imagine enjoying these guys as openers for bands that are actually worth my time, I really couldn’t find anything engaging on this album. I’ll probably not be coming back to this anytime soon, unless someone asks me what does bad metal sound like.